New website?

Terry Hancock hancock at
Thu Jan 19 18:58:27 CET 2006

On 18 Jan 2006 18:05:18 -0800
"Obaid R." <yhdanid at> wrote:
> I hope it is not counted against me that I am the first
> one to point out that the logo is shaped like a cross.

Hey, looks more like a Yin-Yang symbol to me. ;-)

> And why ask with any trepidation, Steve? People of
> different backgrounds have dissimilar sensitivities. I
> hope you agree that it would be unfair to blame people for
> such deeply personal affairs. If trepidation on the part
> of even the Red Cross was enough to cancel such
> sensitivities, we would not have had a Red Crescent or a
> cooperation between them. If not proving one's
> subscription to some set of beliefs, such symbols at least
> disprove the same for others.

No, I'm sorry, intolerance is bad, no matter who practices
it. And what may be forgiveable on a battlefield is not
forgiveable in my workplace.  I can understand that there
were specific circumstances leading to the Red Cross/Red
Crescent schism, and that it had to do with long standing
religious intolerance on both sides. It doesn't make it an
example to follow.

But sheesh, if I objected to every picture of the moon I
see (or pictures that vaguely resemble a moon), I would be
in a very sad state.  Come to think of it, I have a crescent
as a background on my company website (it's Neptune, not
Luna, but it certainly resembles a crescent moon more than
that Python thing resembles a cross). Nevertheless, I am not

> I do realize that I have no say in the decisions affecting
> Python's current and future plans. But it makes sense to
> think that like any other marketed product, Python must
> take into consideration the nature of its target audience.
> And if it is to appeal to international users, then points
> of deep contention are better avoided. Don't you agree? I
> am glad the shape has no significance and I thank you for
> patience.

In America, we call this attitude "politcal correctness",
and it's a dead end street, my friend.

You do realize that the visual "namespace" for highly
symmetric symbols that have no religious significance to
anyone anywhere is EXTREMELY crowded, right?

Especially if you are willing to stretch a picture of two
intertwined snakes into a "Christian" cross (Just to savor
the full irony here, let's remember that snakes are
traditionally a symbol of either Paganism or Voodoo).

The "Red Cross/Red Crescent" thing is a sad reality, IMHO. A
relief organization originally based in Europe uses a flag
which is the inverse of the Swiss flag, because the Swiss
have been (for many, many years) neutral, and that flag
happens to sport a cross, because, (guess what?) Switzerland
was traditionally a Christian country.  Then someone who is
apparently incredibly intolerant of other people's religious
symbols actually goes and *TAKES OFFENSE* at this symbol of
neutrality, so that they have to go and create an alternate
one just to pander to that intolerance.

There is no "Red Yin Yang", "Red Eightfold Path", "Red Star
of David" or "Red Serpent and Rainbow" to my knowledge, and
it would be incredibly stupid for there to be any such. 
Apparently, the state of religious tolerance is better in
the countries where those symbols hold sway.

At worst, the cross might be a reference to "The Spanish
Inquisition", which anyone who knows anything about Python
should know is topical.  The language is European in
origin, so the use of symbol which has become broadly a
European symbol (secularly -- look at the flags of Europe,
as well as religiously).

And besides, we all know it's impossible to avoid "religious
wars" when it comes to computer languages.

In reality, though, it is accidental, and very slight
resemblance.  If you can somehow manage to take offense at
that, then please go get some counseling.


Terry Hancock (hancock at
Anansi Spaceworks

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